Reason #14: Jesus Rose From The Dead To Fulfill Old Testament Longing / Prophecy
As we move through this series of exploring the various reasons for the resurrection it is our hope that we sense the "bigness" of the resurrection of Jesus Christ. Although it is a singular event the ripple effects of this event are immense. At the same time the Resurrection brings to fulfillment so many longings of the Old Testament as well as the longing of the human heart.
The book of Ecclesiastes tells us that God "has put eternity in our hearts" (Ecclesiastes 3:11). This "eternity in our hearts" is a longing for God Himself, which includes a longing for life with God, even eternal and everlasting life.
There is a longing in the human heart to live and to live forever. One example of this that we find in older stories is the legend of the water or the fountain that will give eternal life.
We want to live. We sense life is what we were created for. Death is an intruder into God's good purposes for his creation.
And because of this longing we read the following verse in the book of Psalms for example,:
"Therefore my heart is glad and my tongue rejoices;
my body also will rest secure,
because you will not abandon me to the realm of the dead,
nor will you let your faithful one see decay" (Psalm 16:9-10)
The longing of the writer is that God will not abandon them to "the realm of the dead" (Sheol), nor will God allow them to "see decy." And it is a longing based on a promise--the author is banking their future and eternity on the promise that God will not abandon them.
And this is one of the verses that Peter quotes in his sermon on Pentecost in Acts 2 (verses 25-28) to talk about what God has done for Jesus by raising him from the dead.
The words of Psalm 16 thus become at least 3 things: (1) the longing of the human heart, (2) a pointer to Jesus and a (3) a verse fulfilled through the Resurrection.
At the end of Psalm 16, after banking on this promises of God, the author ends with a vision of life:
"You make known to me the path of life;
you will fill me with joy in your presence,
with eternal pleasures at your right hand" (Psalm 16:12)
May each of us be able to receive those words for us as well and be able to say "Amen!" (so let it be also for me!).